About Ajay

Ajay Awtaney is the Founder and Editor of Live From A Lounge (LFAL), a pioneering digital platform renowned for publishing news and views about aviation, hotels, passenger experience, loyalty programs, travel trends and frequent travel tips for the Global Indian. He is considered the Indian authority on business travel, luxury travel, frequent flyer miles, loyalty credit cards and travel for Indians around the globe. Ajay is a frequent contributor and commentator on the media as well, including ET Now, BBC, CNBC TV18, NDTV, Conde Nast Traveller and many other outlets.

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Have you participated in the Hyatt Million Points Sweepstakes yet?

Just a friendly reminder from your friend at Live From A Lounge, that Hyatt is giving away 100,000 Gold Passport points to 10 participants on Facebook, all for heading up to Facebook and putting up your name, email address and your GP number (if you have one!). What is more, per eligible ’email address’, you can participate 9 times via the 9 different pages below: Hyatt (www.facebook.com/Hyatt) Hyatt Hotels (www.facebook.com/hyatthotels) Park Hyatt (www.facebook.com/ParkHyatt) Andaz (www.facebook.com/andaz) Grand Hyatt (www.facebook.com/grandhyatt) Hyatt Regency (www.facebook.com/HyattRegency) Hyatt Place (www.facebook.com/HyattPlace) Hyatt Summerfield Suites (www.facebook.com/HyattSummerfieldSuites) Hyatt Vacation Club (www.facebook.com/hyattvacationclub) The sweepstakes are open till 9th December 2011, and if you had 10 email ID’s (gmail, hotmail, office, etc.) you could participate in the contest 10 times over!…

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Indian Carriers now bring the widebodies to the Middle East, finally!

This has been an anomaly finally getting sorted out. While I agree and it makes sense that ports such as Dubai, Riyadh and other Middle-east posts are within the flight range of a narrowbody like a 73x or a 32x series plane, but the Mid-East carriers such as Emirates have been dumping capacity (to fly forward pax to North America etc). For the longest time they flew the B777s to India, and my expectations were set high when I first booked a BOM-DXB-BOM in 2009, without bothering to check if it was a narrowbody plane or a widebody. I was thoroughly pissed with myself for not checking up the plane when I walked into the plane to realise it was…

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Enhancements to ‘Live From A Lounge’ and the Swag giveaway ….

Its been 5 eventful months being a part of the BoardingArea community. The Journey is the Reward, and I am trying to make sure that I give you enough of my personal journey stories which should help you with your travels and enough of the Rewards which you can earn yourself on the travels. To engage with you more and often, I’ve been on Twitter from the word go and you can find me at @Livefromalounge. There have been enhancements to the site going on an ongoing basis, and I thought it would be an idea to share with all of you the interesting things happening around here. I can promise you this is not like an enhancement to a…

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Singapore Airlines launches deals from India to USA on the A380

Singapore Airlines is launching the A380 service to the USA via Frankfurt from 15 January 2011. On this occassion, they are offering a special fare of INR 60,000 for a return trip from Mumbai to any of the four US locations served by SIA, namely, New York, Houston, Los Angeles and San Fransisco. This deal is valid for the Economy segment, and from any of the 10 airports served in India by Singapore Airlines / Silk Air. The deal is sweet in case you are willing for a longer routing from India and want to try out the SQ A380, which I bet would be very good service. I’ve never flown SQ to the USA, but I am thinking if…

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Tumi on sale: Upto 40% off on Tumi.com till 28th November!

If you have been eyeing a Tumi carry-on to replace that old one or just to have another one, there is no better time than right now to pick it up. Tumi put up the Seasonal Sale board on its website Tumi.com, where it is offering up to 40% off on various luggage pieces and other products on offer. While the usual scam is that 40% off goes to the least expensive products, there is a reasonable discount also on the carry-on rollerboards and the bigger bags. Have a look at this Alpha carry-on I have been eyeing for a while. It usually retails for $ 495, but going at a 25% discount at $369 as of now. Plus, the…

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What is your best suggestion to make air travel better? Speed-dating at the airport….ummm….

Finnair – the oneworld alliance member from Finland and Helsinki Airport have recently launched the “Quality Hunters” initiative where they are looking out for the one big idea which they will implement to make their flying experience better in the coming year 2012. As a part of this initiative, earlier this year they appointed 7 Quality Hunters who now have the licence to fly around globally looking for ideas which Finnair and the Helsinki Airport can implement. Must say there is quite the idea wreck there. There are nice ones like noise cancelling headphones on rent, to whacky ones like airport speed dating! I see another “Up in the air” being produced shortly, this one, with Finnair mileage hunters on…

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A comprehensive update on Kingfisher Airlines route network due to withdrawal from 12 cities

Since I published my last travel update on the situation at Kingfisher Airlines, there are a lot more changes emerging on an ongoing basis at Kingfisher Airlines. They had earlier announced the withdrawal of 31 flights till November 19, which then turned out to be 50 flights per day on an ongoing basis. Turns out, some of these changes might be permanent. I round up for all of your benefit the routes which are going to get affected and any updates till what time these cancellations/withdrawals may be valid. International Routes The following services are cancelled till further notice: Kochi (COK) – Colombo (CMB) [IT079/IT080] Thiruvananthapuram (TRV) – Colombo (CMB) [IT077/IT078] Mumbai (BOM) – Bangkok (BKK) [IT023/IT024] Delhi (DEL) –…

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Birdwatch: Photo # 3 (Kingfisher Airlines)

This past week, when I was ready to take off from Mumbai Airport Terminal 1C, I saw Kingfisher sharing the tarmac with us. So, it got clicked! Here is the picture for all of you! Airline: Kingfisher Airlines (originally Air Deccan) Location: Mumbai Airport Terminal 1C Airframe: Airbus 320 If you want to share a picture of a plane, an airport, or anything aviation related, please send it across to aj@livefromalounge.com with the details and I’ll put it up here. Thank you!

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Reminder: Earn 20% more KingClub Miles on transfer before 30th Nov 2011

Just a quick reminder for those who intend to be making some bookings on Kingfisher Airlines in the award category. The special promotion which has been running this quarter to offer 20% extra miles free is going to end on 30th November 2011. Like I mentioned earlier in September 2011,  this offer is valid till November 30, 2011. Here is what you have to do to avail 20% bonus KingClub Miles. Transfer worth 5000 miles worth from your credit card program or hotel programs to the King Club, and Kingfisher will add a 20% on top of it while crediting the miles. Take note, that different programs have different equivalents for the KingClub Miles, and hence you have to use…

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9 weeks to oneworld MegaDo: Preparing for Seat 33A

Like I blogged last week, I’m getting ready for the MegaDo trip that happens a few weeks down the road, and I wanted to plan this trip with the readers and other travel gurus on BoardingArea. First up, I must bring you up to speed with all that happened towards hitting the road 9 weeks down though, and then some questions for all of you! Booking seats on the JFK-LHR-DFW AA flights – Check Last week, Pizzaman from the core team responsible for the OWMD put out a post on Milepoint asking everyone who has interest on the optional segment in London to drop him a mail along with the class preference, and AA would get back to us. A…

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Presenting… the Runway Musical!

Indigo, India’s best-run low cost carrier, recently spread its wings international. Personally, for me the airline has been associated with good service and the cool factor. They just put up a new commercial on air which brought the spunk around one more time, and it shows how the airline works in a choreographed fashion to put up a good flight show!   Enjoy it here!  

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